Dancing in the Dark



Friday, 27 December 2013

The two young men lifted their sunglasses, squinting in the bright sunshine, before peering into each other's eyes. The corners of their mouths rose in slow motion, until both were smiling while they bumped fists.

"Hey, mate," said a cheerful Owen.

"Hey, man. Good morning. How'd you sleep?" CJ stared at his shoes momentarily before once again looking at the Aussie's face.

"Slept great!" Owen placed his hand on CJ's back, steadying him as the teen climbed back into the SUV. "Hope you're ready to drink some wine and do a bit of shopping. G'day, all of you." Owen greeted the other men, followed CJ, and sat next to him in the back row.

"Morning," they chorused back. After breakfast, César, Brett, and CJ had driven to the Smiths' home, where JP and Tom joined them. They were now at the Liston Winery compound.

"What do you mean shopping?" asked CJ. "What for?"

"I can't believe you forgot swimmers and all you have are your running shorts. You can't wear those when we go to Bondi. You need some boardies, and thongs."

"Sorry, man. But I ain't wearing no bathing suit with only a string running up my ass crack."

JP's guffaw echoed his cousin's laugh. "Nah, mate," said the man. "I don't think that's the type of thongs Owen's talking about. But you should get some budgie smugglers anyway."

"Sorry, CJ. We call those cheap, rubber things everyone wears thongs. Flip-flops in American. They're like part of a national uniform."

"Ummm, okay. Then I guess those smuggling things Uncle JP mentioned must be some sort of bathing suit?"

"You haven't seen this boy naked, Owen," chortled JP. "Those will look like he's smuggling an emu, not a budgie!"

"Hey! Cut it out," CJ whined. "No need to discuss my size. And anyway, Owen's seen it." The momentary silence inside the vehicle seemed to last forever.

"Ohhh kaaay," said Brett. "You guys are a bunch of perverts, you know? I've seen both theirs and they've seen mine. Hell, we all saw each other's junk yesterday when we stripped off the wet suits in the parking lot."

"You got naked in public?" asked César in mock horror. "That better be all you did, old man."

"Old man, my ass!" replied Brett.

"Yeah, now that you mention it, your ass did look a bit saggy, Papa."


"Children! Behave!" admonished César, holding back another chuckle. "If you don't, you'll stay in the car and not get to sample any of the wines. Where to, Owen?"

"Ohhh, make a right at the end of the drive, sir." Owen leaned forward, placing his forearms on the back of the second row of seats as he spoke. "Then take the first exit at the roundabout."

"He means the traffic circle," interjected JP.

"Yeah," replied César. "I figured that one out on my own, Einstein."

"Where are we going?" asked CJ.

"I thought we'd start with the neighbors? Their place is family run like ours and the owners are good friends with my parents. I called ahead and they promised to open up a bottle of something special for us."

"I could get used to this, Dads." CJ gave a quick glance in Owen's direction before reaching for his hand. "Can we always go on vacation with our own private tour guide?"

"Sure," replied Brett, who was sitting on the middle row next to JP. "But next time our cruise director might be old and overweight, instead of a buff surfer dude."

"Looks have nothing to do with it, Papa."

"Oh, yeah?" asked Brett, turning around slightly to look at his son. Catching the two younger men holding hands, his eyebrows shot up, and he grinned. "You still gonna want to hold hands if the guy doesn't look like him?" The marine had already turned back to face the front, accompanied by sticking a thumb over his shoulder in Owen's direction.

CJ knew his cheeks were coloring, but he kept holding Owen's hand just the same. When he felt his friend squeeze his fingers, he smiled. "Prolly not." The boy leaned back and moved a little closer to the man sitting next to him, a smug expression on his face.

"Leave the kids alone, Jarhead," said Tom from the front passenger seat. "What can we expect at this place?"

"The best shiraz in the region!" replied Owen enthusiastically. "And that's saying a lot since we make some very good stuff. Although the fruit's named after a city in Iran, they have done DNA tests which proved it came from crossing two old French grapes. It helped put Australian wines on the map."

"Somebody's been paying attention," quipped JP.

"Hey, the bloody little fruit's paying for me to attend uni in the United States. Of course I've been paying attention. Anyway, the grape's grown all over the world, was one of the first type of vines planted in the Hunter, and it's really flourished here."

"And you say these people make a wine better than yours?" asked CJ.

"Yeah, mate. Ours is good, but what these guys produce is out of this world. They promised to open up a bottle of their Reserve High Grounds for us. It's rated in the upper nineties, and not usually given away to visitors."

"Okay," said César. "I agree with CJ. Having our own personal tour guide is a good thing. Although, personally, I couldn't care less what he looks like."

• • •

The men visited three different wineries, before heading to a pub for lunch sometime after noon. Each stop meant several small glasses of wine, starting with the lighter whites, before moving on to the more robust reds. After the initial tastings, Owen volunteered to serve as the designated driver, not having more than a sip or two at subsequent spots. It was five very happy―though not quite drunk―men who followed him into the Australia Hotel in search of food.

"I feel better," said César after they'd all visited the restroom and sat down at a table. "What the hell have the two of you been whispering about for the last hour or so?" he asked, slightly slurring his words and pointing at his son and Owen.

CJ looked at his new friend and smiled. "Just a little plotting about the next few days, Dad."

"Maybe you should fill us in?" suggested Brett.

"Sure, I think we got it all figured out." CJ placed both hands on the table, took a quick glance at the men around it, and the focused his eyes on his dads. "Clarke, the guy we went surfing with yesterday, texted Owen earlier. He and his girlfriend have tickets to a concert tomorrow night in Sydney. The couple they were going with had to cancel, so he wanted to know if Owen and I would like to go with him and his girl."

"We won't be in Sydney until the day after tomorrow," interjected Brett. He raised his eyebrows in a questioning way and looked at his son before glancing at Owen.

"Yeah, about that, Captain," said Owen, looking straight into the man's eyes. "If you agree, I'd be happy to take CJ to Sydney a day ahead. We can go to the concert tomorrow night, and he can spend the night at my mate's place. It's the flat I lived in while at uni. He's still in there, and his new flat-mate won't move in until the new school year starts."

Brett looked at César, shrugging his shoulders, and cocking his head to the side. "Would the two of you be riding with Clarke and his girlfriend?" asked the marine.

"We were thinking of riding Owen's bike, Papa. Clarke said he would take our luggage and drop it off for us at the apartment. If we have the motorcycle with us, we can ride to the beach the following morning while we wait for you guys to get there."

"César? What do you think?" asked Brett.

"Let me make a quick phone call," replied César, standing and walking towards the door. "I'll be right back."

"You guys realize if we say yes there will be some rules to follow, right?" asked Brett looking at the two younger men.

"That would be fine, Captain."

"What kinda rules, Papa? I thought Dad already went over them. Back at the airport in LA."

"First one is, there won't be any motorcycle riding unless you're both stone cold sober." Brett shook his index finger at them.

"It won't be a problem, Captain. I never ride after drinking."

"We'll need the address of the place you'll be crashing at, and a name and phone number for your friend," continued Brett.

"Yes, sir," replied Owen.

"And you'll call us when you get to Sydney. And right after the concert."

"We can do that, Papa. So it's okay for me to go tomorrow?"

"Here comes your other dad, let's see what he has to say." Brett glanced up at his husband, gave him a quick smile, and winked at him.

"Based on the smiles, I'll assume Brett's fine with you going on ahead of us. I just called the hotel and changed our reservation." César sat staring at his son and the young Aussie next to him; both looked surprised. "I'd rather you guys stayed at the hotel instead of with people I don't know. Your room will be available a day early. Your friend can drop off your luggage at the front desk when he gets to Sydney. They'll hold it for you until the room's available in the afternoon. Now, about alcohol consumption―"

"Already covered it, babe," said Brett. "They know they're not allowed to go near the motorcycle if they drink." The marine stared at the young men with a serious expression. "Not that I want either one of you getting too drunk at all. You understand?"

• • •

There were a couple of surf shops in the valley, and after lunch Owen steered them to one of them. CJ ended up with thongs, an AussieBum square-cut red bathing suit, two pairs of long board shorts, and a couple of shirts. The remainder of the afternoon they spent sampling their way through three more wineries. As the cellar doors were mostly closing down for the day, they headed back to the Liston Bistro for a family meal.

"Hi, CJ," greeted Elizabeth, waving as the men approached. "Are you enjoying your holiday?"

"Oh, hell yeah," replied CJ, giving the girl a quick peck on the cheek. "It's been sick! And I can't wait until we hit Sydney. This winery tour business is too much drinking for me."

"I guess we grow up with the wine all around us," explained Elizabeth. "We just take it for granted. I heard Owen say he was going to a concert tomorrow night. Are you going with him?"

CJ felt somewhat embarrassed by the question. He wasn't sure why it was weird to admit he was going on a date with her brother. "Yeah, I am. His friend has two tickets so he invited me to come along."

"That's good. He likes you. Owen, I mean." Elizabeth smiled and softly poked CJ on the chest. "So are you not having wine tonight? I mean, since you say it was too much for you during the tour?"

"Prolly not... I think I'm done for the day. All I want with dinner is water."

"What a shame. And here I opened a bottle of the Verdelho you seemed to enjoy so much on Christmas." Jack's voice made CJ turn around to find the white-haired man standing behind him. He was holding a sweating bottle of wine wrapped in a napkin in one hand, while the other one held two empty wine glasses.

"Jack!" exclaimed the boy. He stood and took the glasses from the man's hand and placed them on the table. "You shouldn't have. Now I feel guilty." CJ glanced at his fathers over his shoulder. "Sorry, Dads. Guess I'll have to drink a bit more tonight."

"Dude! Wipe the smirk off your face," replied Brett. "Same rules apply. You get drunk, I don't carry you. Oh, and no hangover complaints tomorrow."

"Good wine doesn't give you hangovers," said Jack. "Only the cheap stuff does."

The restaurant had cordoned off a section to accommodate the Liston and Smith families, and their visitors from the United States. Wanting the Americans to enjoy native cuisine, the chef had prepared a special meal for the group―seared kangaroo, roasted heirloom carrots, and white truffle creamed potatoes.

Conversation ranged from wines, to what to do in Sydney, to Owen's eventual move to attend law school in the United States. CJ tore into the food with a gusto which brought jokes about starving children in America from the Aussies. Given three choices of sorbets made from tropical fruit, the teen picked all three. Afterwards, he declared the guava one his favorite.

As the sun set, CJ kept glancing at the sky, waiting for the stars to come out. Being out in the countryside away from the city lights, the great canopy of distant suns spread over them slowly, bringing a smile to his face. Washington and Miami were not good places for stargazing: too much urban light pollution. This reminded him of nights out on his step-father's boat in the Florida Keys. He and Ritchie would often lie on the bow; the younger brother pointing out constellations.

"Hey," called out CJ. "Can I walk out in the vineyards? I'd like to get away from the building lights, so I can check out the stars."

Owen rose so quickly his chair teetered on two legs, ready to fall, until his grandfather reached out and steadied it. "Come on, mate. I'll walk with you. There's a little hill on the other side we can go to. I'll point out the Southern Cross."

"Jimmy Buffet has a song by that name," said CJ, as they walked away from the restaurant's terrace. "I saw him in concert last year down in Miami. The song's about sailing in the South Pacific."

"I'll have to check it out on YouTube," replied Owen, taking the teen's hand in his own. They had rounded the corner of the building, their way illuminated by starlight. "There," he said, raising his index finger towards the sky. "See the really bright star I'm pointing at?"

CJ released the hand he'd been holding, and moved a bit closer to Owen, peering along his arm, towards the bright point of light he was singling out. "Yeah, I can see it. Is it part of the cross?"

"Yep. That's Acrux. It's the bottom tip." Owen placed an arm around CJ's shoulders, while raising the one aimed at the sky a bit further. "That one's Gacrux. It's the upper tip of the cross. There's one a bit lower, to the left, and two to the right."

"Those are the stars on the flag, right?"

"On ours, the Kiwi flag, and a couple of others around the world. The Australian one also has a large, seven point star underneath the Union Jack to represent the colonies making up the country." The Aussie turned slightly towards his companion and looked into his eyes. "The five stars in the cross are also a popular tattoo. You'll see a bunch of them when we go to the beach."

"Cool," replied CJ, no longer staring at the stars, but at his friend's face.

Owen wrapped his arms around the teen, and pulled him tight against his body so CJ's hands were trapped between their chests. He dipped his head until their foreheads touched, and CJ felt as if the man was staring straight into his soul.

"Can you feel my heart, beating underneath these stars?" he asked in a whisper. "It's you who makes it race. You're the brightest star out tonight. You're perfect, CJ."

"Far from it. Do me a favor?"


"Shut up and kiss me."

• • •

"You realize what's gonna happen tomorrow, right?" asked César, running the bar of soap over Brett's shoulders.

"I have no idea. What are you talking about?" Brett's head rested against the tiled wall, his eyes closed, as he enjoyed his husband's hands on his body. They'd returned from the winery ready to wash the day's grime off themselves; the joint shower had taken on more than a simple cleaning procedure however.

"I mean," replied César, wrapping his arms around the marine and nestling his engorged manhood between the man's ass cheeks. "There's a very good chance, CJ and Owen will be doing exactly the same thing we're doing right now, once they get to Sydney."

"I hope they enjoy it as much as we are."


Saturday, 28 December 2013

CJ and Owen had not had a lot of alone time after showering together following their sand dunes ride. Touching and kissing, under the warm spray of the shower, the two had used their hands to explore each other's body, and it had not taken much to manipulate each other into an orgasm. CJ wanted more and was hoping he would get his wish granted while in Sydney.

"Leave your backpack by the bike, mate. Just don't rest it against the pipes, they'll burn through anything right now. But you probably know that from riding with your dads." Owen was already stripping off his riding leathers, as he indicated with a nod where CJ could place his bag. "Throw your jacket on top of mine. And don't forget your phone."

"Our stuff will be safe here?" asked CJ, following the instructions, before walking towards the edge of the grassy area next to the pavement.

"Yeah, it's mostly locals who stop around here. And I think everyone knows my motorbike."

"You that popular?"

"Nah, mate. I've had it for a long time. I ride it plenty, and I've parked here often enough. When you said last night you wanted to see kangaroos in the wild, I immediately thought of this billabong. The roos come here to drink in the morning and evening. This is where I'd hide when I was down, or when I needed to think. Living at the winery meant always being surrounded by people."

"What did you have to hide from?"

"Back before uni, when I was struggling with coming out. I knew I was gay but I was scared."

"But, wasn't Uncle JP out then? Wouldn't that have made it easier for you?"

"Yes and no," replied Owen. "John Paul's the oldest of the cousins, and he could have taken over running the winery if he wanted to. But he made it clear he wasn't interested from an early age. Then he came out while in the United States, eventually met Tom, and that kinda put the spotlight on me. Hey look! Roos! And there's a joey! You got bloody lucky."

"Damn! They look so cute! I guess I'll post one of these pics on Facebook. Might as well let the people back home know I'm still alive."

"Yeah, about that. I've noticed you don't put a lot of stuff online. How come?"

"I don't know. I think I'm scared of getting addicted. I mean, I know guys who post anything from a detailed menu of what they ate during the day, to announcements about walking the dog. And it's not a once in a while thing, but all the time. They have to say good morning, and good night every day. If I lived in some far off place, with few friends to hang around with, I could understand it. Or if I had a zillion friends all over, who I wanted to keep in touch with. But I see most of my friends all the time at school. I'd rather talk to them in person."

"I think we all know a few of those aggro posters."

"I kinda feel bad for them. I can see it if you were a shut-in too. Or old. But if you're our age and can move, get the fuck off the computer. Go lead a real life, not a cyber one. Anyway, enough of that. I'm gonna try to post at least one picture every day, so I'm not killed when I get back. But hell if I'm spending my vacation replying to messages."

"I think you'll be busy once we're in Sydney. This has been the relaxed portion of the trip."

"So, you didn't finish before. You said JP put the spotlight on you?"

"Yeah, kinda. Being the next oldest, it was then assumed I'd marry, have kids, and end up running the winery. But I knew I was gay also, and it tore me up thinking I'd disappoint my parents."

"Well, they certainly don't seem to have a problem with gay people."

"Oh, they don't. And they never have. It was all me. But then I went to uni, met Dawson, and first trip back home I told everyone."


"Yeah, my ex. Ultimate shit he turned out to be. I'll tell you about him some other time. Let's get back on the road."

"Okay. How about koala bears? Where can we see those?"

"The zoo, mate. Those aren't easy to find in the wild. And speaking of zoos, it'll be one tonight at the concert, and again on New Year's Eve. Big night in Sydney. If we end up hanging out together with any of my uni friends, we might run into my ex. Ignore him and anything he says."

At CJ's insistence, they had stopped at an ATM so he could get cash to pay for the tickets, and any other expenses which they might not be able to pay for with a card. He promised Owen he'd explain about the money later, when the Aussie complained about not being allowed to pay his share.

The Russell Hotel's entrance, on the rounded building corner at the Intersection of Globe and George Streets, promised an experience quite different from the one at the Crowne Plaza in Newcastle. The boutique hostelry, located in the historical Rocks area of Sydney, had roots back in the eighteenth century.

Owen remained outside leaning against his motorcycle, while CJ ran inside to find out what time he could check in. Minutes later, he stuck his head out the door, told Owen to go park the bike, and join him in the lobby. Although the hotel had been able to accommodate the guys arriving a day earlier, the room previously reserved for him would not be available until the next day.

"Mate, what was all that about?" asked Owen, as he followed CJ away from the front desk.

"What was what all about?" CJ grabbed the polished wood banister with one hand, glancing at Owen over his shoulder. "We gotta go up one flight of stairs. The room is on the first floor. Funny numbering system y'all have."

"I mean, what he said about different floors and sharing a bathroom?"

"Ohhh, that. The original reservations were for three rooms, each with their own bathroom, all right by each other. The one I was going to get isn't available until tomorrow. They put me in another one, and said I could move in the morning. The one they gave me shares a bathroom with two other rooms. I told them to forget about it, and I'd keep the same room for the entire stay."

"Your dads won't mind?"

"They'll get over it."

"Does it cost the same? This room should be cheaper."

"I'm sure. But I'm not gonna worry about it. I'll mention it to the Dads. One of them will check up on it."

"Okay, so this seems like a good time to talk money. I don't want you paying for everything, CJ. I have money."

"I'm sure you do. But without being an asshole, I've got more than I could ever spend. I think. Let me tell you how I came to live with the Dads. And then I'll fill you in on Papa's family history."

While unpacking, CJ explained about his step-father banishing him from Miami―after the man discovered CJ kissing one of his soldiers―and the move to Washington to live with César and Brett. About how he had spent the summer surrounded by his dads' gay friends, and how they'd helped him feel comfortable in his own skin. About the double wedding where he served as best man for his fathers, and for JP and Tom. And rather quickly, without much detail in comparison to how much he was otherwise sharing, he mentioned Brett inheriting a large amount of money, and how CJ was now his adopted son and sole beneficiary.

"Why aren't you taking your clothes out of the bag?" asked CJ, pointing at Owen's backpack. The Aussie had dropped it in a corner of the room when they'd entered, before sitting on the edge of the bed, while CJ told his story.

"What do you mean? I need to shower before the concert. I thought I'd have lunch with you before going to my friend's flat. I'll come back later and we'll take a taxi to the show."

"What the hell are you talking about? Friend's flat? Fuck that shit. You're staying here at least for tonight. Hopefully for the rest of my trip. You think I'm going to pass up the chance of sleeping with you?"

"Too right! I didn't want to be an ass and assume." The comment made CJ snicker. "But I was hoping you'd say that. Which side of the bed do you want?"

• • •

The Rocks, the area where their hotel was located, was one of Sydney's most historic sections. It was where the first European settlement in Australia, a penal colony, was established in 1788. The name came from the many original structures, erected by the convicts, built using hand-made bricks or blocks of local sandstone rocks.

The guys walked over to a pub for lunch. Afterwards, they showered together, and while passionately kissing, brought each other to an orgasm with their hands. A late night, followed by an early morning, and the ride to Sydney―combined with food, beer, and sex―led to them getting in bed to take a nap.

Some ninety minutes later, waking up feeling rested and happy, CJ had dragged Owen back into the shower. They had repeated their earlier enjoyment of each other, before dressing in jeans and t-shirts―a black Harley Davidson one for CJ, reading UNLEASH THE LEGEND, above two dragons in flight facing off, on a background of flames. They'd hailed a cab for the ride to the concert, and while CJ paid the fare, Owen looked up and down the long line of people waiting for their doors to open.

"That's the queue we need to get into," said Owen, grabbing CJ's arm, and pointing to the line hugging the outer wall of the venue. "And there's Clarke!" Their friend saw them as soon as they exited the car and waved at them.

"Owen! Hey, CJ," shouted Clarke, as they approached. The look he gave them was not a happy one. "I was just telling Dawson here he'd better get to the back of the queue. He can't cut in with us."

The guy he was talking about turned at that moment, the sight of him making Owen suddenly stop. Dawson was a bit shorter than the three other men; fairly well built, but far from having as defined a body as they did. His dark red hair was closely cropped on the sides, a bit longer and stiff looking on top―lots of hair product, thought CJ. The scruff on his face was perfectly even, as carefully trimmed and shaped as the chest hair visible through the open neck of his shirt.

"Well, well, well. If it isn't my gorgeous ex," said the redhead, looking Owen and CJ up and down. "And he's got himself some serious eye candy with him. Maybe the three of us can have some fun after the concert?" He added, extending his hand towards CJ. "Hey, mate. I'm Dawson."

Owen stood defiantly, his hands clenching into fists. "In your bloody dreams, scumbag. Now get the hell away from my friend before I―"

"Easy, Owen," said CJ, placing his hand on the man's arm. "I think Dawson's paying us a compliment. Sounds to me as if he'd like to get naked and play with the two of us. Am I right, Red?"

"Hell, yeah, mate. You and I can take turns inside blondie here. I love to see him get―"

"I get the idea, buddy," interrupted CJ. He seemed to stand a bit taller and when he next spoke, his voice came out in a low, gravely whisper. "We have a problem, though. Real men don't pluck their eyebrows, use eyeliner, or spend hours in front of a mirror trying to make sure each hair's in place. You know? Like you did before going out tonight? Fine if that's what floats your boat, but not for me. I'm interested in masculine guys. You get a big fail in that department."

The stunned looking Dawson rolled his eyes dramatically. "An American? Ya had to slum? Couldn't find yourself a good Aussie bloke, Owen?"

"Okay, enough!" said CJ authoritatively. "I think it's time you went your own way, Dawson. Nice meeting you. So, Clarke, where's your girlfriend?" His change of topic was a clear dismissal of the bothersome Dawson.

"Well! Grooming advice from someone wearing a motorbike shirt to a Tyson Hill concert. Good luck with him, Owen. Call me when he's no longer around." The redhead did not look like a happy camper when he turned and stormed off towards the end of the line.

Owen shook his head in what CJ assumed was disbelief. A similar expression on Clarke's face gave way to uproarious laughter. "Mate, that was brilliant! My girlfriend should be here soon, she walked to the bottle shop. We wanted to get a flask of whiskey to sneak inside. Hate to pay concert prices for drinks. Oh, she's gonna sooo be pissed she missed the show you just put on. None of us liked the bogan when he and Owen were dating."

CJ glanced at Owen questioningly, making the Aussie look at his feet while nodding. "Yeah, that's my ex. I'll tell you about him some other time, like I said before.. Now I'm ready to enjoy the concert and have a good time. I'm still surprised you knew who Tyson Hill[i] was when I mentioned him."

"You can thank your brother for it."

The curly haired rocker put on a show which had the audience screaming in adoration and dancing in the aisles. CJ had never attended anything like it in his life. The songs were touching and exhilarating at the same time, and the rock star had the crowd eating from his palm. Clarke's girlfriend pointed out the crooner's partner sitting a few rows ahead of them. Some good looking, blonde guy with dimples she said was a lawyer. CJ thought the two men would look good together.

Back at the hotel, CJ was still humming one of the many songs he'd heard that night, when Owen wrapped his arms around the dark haired teen and bent his head to kiss him. CJ smiled and pulled away before the peck to his lips could grow into more. "Ummm... I think I'm a little too drunk to try what your ex suggested. When we do, I want to be completely sober. So I remember all the details. But right now you better get naked real quick."

"Ohhh, really?" chuckled Owen in response. "And why should I?

"Ummm, `cause I'm going to lick every inch of your body. And then I'm going to suck your dick until I swallow everything you give me."

"Deal! But I get to do the same, at the same time..."

• • •

Back at the hotel in Newcastle, César and Brett were also getting ready for bed. They had spent a second day touring vineyards, and had fallen in love with the Hunter Valley and its many wines. At the end of the day, while chatting with Jack at the bistro once again, they had placed an order for several cases of the best Liston bottlings, including one of the Verdelho Owen loved so much, and CJ had come to enjoy.

"I'm bushed," said César as he slipped into bed next to Brett. "Plus, I'm definitely pickled. How many bottles of wine you think we've put away the past five days?"

"Who cares? I've enjoyed them all, and I'm looking forward to more once we get to Sydney. After everything we've learned, I want to try other growing areas."

"Me too. The Yarra Valley stuff sounds good."

"I hope the kids had a good time at the concert. All the text from CJ said was they were at the hotel for the night. Kate said the guy's a great performer and people at his shows often end up dancing to his rock anthems."

"Yeah, right. The way those two have been the past few days, I have a feeling they're doing more than just dancing in the dark."


[i] Tyson Hill is the intellectual property of Marcus McNally and is used with his permission. If you like the CJ series, I'm certain you'll enjoy reading his stories, "Love on the Rocks," and "Love on the Rocks – Five years On."


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